I am fairly certain that my decision to pursue another avenue of publication is the right path after thinking on it for awhile. It’s funny because the concept has been staring me in the face for literally years.
Seriously, it seems like everybody who really wants to accomplish anything now in their lives are turning to the internet. I mean, yeah sure there are millions of people running around out there with head shots, portfolios, scripts or a novel in their hands; each one scrambling for an agent, hoping for that one meeting that is going to change their lives.
However there are plenty of others out there who have decided to take their fate in their own hands and seek out their place in the world on the web. And from an uneducated point of view, it seems to me like the race is a statistical dead heat on those that seem to prosper.
Who had heard of Felicia Day before Dr. Horrible and The Guild? David Wellington and David Moody were just struggling authors till they dug in on the internet with Autumn and Monster Nation. Do I even have to evoke the Bieber? (God help me, I just wrote about Justin Bieber…) And these stories are not anomalies, there are many more.
People who have recognized their own skills and set about to make it work in a medium that has the room to let them grow and flourish. On the net it all depends on the end product. If your work has any value what so ever, people will find it.
Here is a perfect example of what I am talking about…
I actually have three blogs. There is this blog which is specifically about my struggles with my career and self identity. There is a second blog where I keep dead end projects, or stories I know just have no real life in them. Lastly there is a blog where I write politics and/or conspiracy theories, which I rarely do and is the least used blog with only like six posts..
When checked against their stats, my political/conspiracy blog blows the other three away. Almost ten thousand hits since fall of 2008 on six blog posts…In comparison this blog has less than a thousand since started in December 2010 on 31 blog posts.
Now I’ll admit that reading about conspiracy theories and political shenanigans are much more interesting than watching someone crumbled before the weight of the publishing universe but damn that’s disheartening sometimes. On the flip side it shows that i am totally right about if you create something good people will find it.
Think about it, six posts that have never been shared via facebook or twitter garnering at least a hundred people a month that stop by just to take a peak. If I could have that kind of success with an e-book, that could translate in to a real leap forward in my evolution as a writer.
The Plan: I have been concentrating on short stories for the majority of this year and I really don’t see the point of changing direction as far as that goes. I enjoy the process of creating stories that actually have an end point (my novel projects always become long drawn out messy affairs), and the idea of a compilation book has always been in the back of my mind.
In my youth all the great things in my life always seemed to be in small quantities. Twilight Zone, comic books, short stories from Harlan Ellison; all these things gave me that satisfied feeling when the endings came. Of course I always wanted more but I was never dissatisfied with what I got.
So a short story compilation novel is the project for me and since I already have five stories either finished or in the works close to being finished, I was thinking about what new stories I should work on for the rest of the book. But wait…what is that I see approaching from around the corner?
Yup that’s right, goddamn Nanowrimo.
The Cannonball Run of writing experiments. 30 days of non-stop, stress inducing creation or as I like to call it, “The Meatgrinder”.
November; for years now, has been known to those marathoners of the page as National Novel Writing Month.
For those brave enough to take on this herculean task the rules are very simple. From November 1st till November 30th create a story of 50,000 words. It doesn’t have to be pretty, it doesn’t have to be edited; it just has to be done by midnight on November 30th. The thought is if you can actually meet the deadline of Fifty Thousand Words in thirty days then you will have plenty of time in the following months to edit and polish that baby into something worthwhile. (Without a doubt this time of year causes Eastbound and Down by Jerry Reed to play in my head continuously!)
There is no cash prize, no offer to get published. You get a little badge for your website and get to claim the title of finalist but other than that nada. Just that lovely little manuscript sitting there.
So my plan is to throw myself head first into the meat grinder this year and see if I can create one novella to put into my short story compilation and nail this bitch down by christmas. Nothing in my life would make me happier than to be pimping my book on the interwebs coming spring of next year, so I have to buckle down because this gonna be a bumpy november.
If you want to participate in Nanowrimo yourself, please join us by clicking on the name at any point in this post. it will be the hardest thing you have ever done but if you actually complete it, think about the rewards…